The Arizona Republic/azcentral.com, part of the USA Today Network ,is looking for a dynamic, metrics-informed newsroom leader to join our award-winning sports team and direct local sports coverage. An assistant sports editor-level position, the local sports content coach guides a team of reporters and interns focusing on coverage of high school sports in the metro Phoenix market.

This editor also is the newsroom director of our year-long azcentral Sports Awards program, which culminates in a gala event where the best athletes and teams in Arizona prep sports are honored.

Coverage of high school sports generates as much traffic as our top pro sports beats and is a strong subscription driver. Some of the greatest joy in our communities comes from high school sports, so we take it seriously, but always infuse our coverage with a sense of fun.

Greater Phoenix provides the ideal setting for notable sports journalism – a diverse, international metropolitan area that’s one of 13 in the nation with all four legacy pro sports leagues, plus high-impact events ranging from spring training to the world’s best-attended golf tournament to major national pro and college championships. We are Arizona’s No. 1 source for sports news and commentary. The Republic has Arizona’s largest and most-trusted newsroom and azcentral.com has the most visitors, page views and engagement in the state.

The right candidate for this position knows that high school sports coverage is a year-round endeavor, and it’s not about writing game stories. It’s about coaching our team to continue to grow and engage our audience. It’s generating stories about athletes reaching for D-I college scholarships, and those finding their path back from adversity. It’s providing insight and analysis on major trends and personalities impacting the Arizona local sports world. It’s pushing to find the right type of content for each platform and being a watchdog for our local sports community.

We will expect a lot from this role, but we will provide the right candidate a platform to shine across our newsroom, in our communities and through the USA Today Network.

Responsibilities: 

  • Own the strategy for high school sports coverage, including social media engagement, that allows to continue building a loyal, passionate audience.
  • Own editorial responsibilities associated with the azcentral Sports Awards program.
  • Employ metrics, best practices and experimentation to grow both total audience and sports-driven digital subscriptions.
  • Story/line edit content produced by high school sports reporters, interns and freelancers, including secondary sports covered by these writers.
  • Work a flexible schedule that will include select nights and weekends producing real-time coverage of Arizona sports.
  • Be a champion for producing high-end feature, enterprise and investigative work, including content that can be shared across the USA Today Network.
  • Coach reporters to independent planning and self-direction – before, during and after the creation of content – helping them shape ideas and tailor content specific to audience and platform.
  • Serve as a versatile and active member of the Republic sports leadership team.
  • Supervise summer Pulliam Fellows recruited from the company’s competitive national internship program.
  • Recruit interns twice a year to work as high school/general assignment reporters and digital producers

Send resume to Mark Faller, Sports Content Coach, Arizona Republic and azcentral.com, at mark.faller@arizonarepublic.com

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